• Frankie Dettori’s 2019 Gold Cup win

With Royal Ascot awaiting to see if the 2020 meeting can go ahead behind closed doors, in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown, ANDREW  ATKINSON looks back at Frankie Dettori’s 2019 Gold Cup win on Stradivarius.

WHAT an amazing horse he is – those were the words of Italian superstar jockey Frankie Dettori after he rode Stradivarius to victory in Royal Ascot’s Gold Cup last year.

“Stradivarius is a horse for the big occasion – I love him dearly,” purred Dettori, after unsaddling his seventh Gold Cup career win.

Racing’s biggest jockey draw Dettori was winning back-to-back Gold Cups on the John Gosden trained Stradivarius.

“People care so much about this horse. It’s a wonderful story – every time he runs, he delivers,” said Milan born Dettori.

Royal Ascot 2019 will be remembered by Dettori – and punters alike – after riding four winners, including A’Ali in the Norfolk Stakes.

“It brings back some great memories,” said Dettori, who worked with A’Ali’s trainer Simon Crisford at Godolphin.

“I’m really delighted – he’s been great to me through my career,” said Dettori.

Dettori, 48, rode Sir Michael Stoute trained Sangarius to victory in the 2019 Royal Ascot Hampton Court Stakes for his second winning ride.

John Gosden trained Star Catcher won the Ribblesdale Stakes, with Dettori up, completing a bookie-bashing treble: “Having the first three winners on Gold Cup and Ladies’ Day, it can’t get any better than this,” said Dettori.

Stradivarius win was Dettori’s 66th race win at Ascot, and the first horse to win successive Gold Cups, since Yeats completed four consecutive victories in in 2009.

Dettori’s biggest Ascot memory is inscribed in racing history – after riding seven winners – when going through the card’s seven-race meeting in 1996.